When you send your child to school this year -- will he or she be ready?
"We are sending too many children to school unprepared for learning," said Judy Samelson, CEO of the Early Childhood Investment Corporation.
A study released Tuesday by the Early Childhood Investment Corporation says one in three Michigan children aren't prepared for kindergarten. Which CEO Samelson said puts an undue burden on the teacher, the school, and the state.
"They are not socially or emotionally prepared," Samelson said. "They might not be physically prepared, they might not have the very rudimentary understanding of the language or cognitive skills."
"That survey is right on target," Andon Pogoncheff said.
Pogoncheff was a teacher for 30 years and now consults for school districts. He said parents need to play a bigger role.
"I think early childhood development also has to be parental development where the parents take time to be with the kids, work with the kids, and develop a program in which the child can succeed," Pogoncheff said.
Pogoncheff said kids need to learn the fundamentals before they head to school -- like shapes and colors, the alphabet and counting from one to 10. Plus he said, they must have some kind social interaction.
"The problem is if a child starts off slowly, they'll stay behind," he said.
Both Pogoncheff and Samelson agree each child is unique with different needs, but most things are universal.
"In essence children need to be read to, they need to be talked to," Samelson said. "The language issues of children are phenomenal the number of words they need to know and can learn. The disparity between children who have a good early childhood experience and those who don't is quite large."
Samelson said every year 11 percent of kindergartners have to repeat kindergarten which costs the state about $100 million.
Samelson said there has been one recommendation from the State Senate to wipe out the early childhood program -- which would mean 30,000 kids would not have a pre-k experience. She said that would be devastating